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W Taipei and Taiwan Design Center present The Nouvelle Dining Experience with Taiwan’s Top 9 Designers

W Taipei Food Redesign - Designer Lance Han, TDC Deputy CEO Oliver Lin, W Taipei Marcom Director Wina Chen, IDB Director General Ming Ji Wu
W Taipei and Taiwan Design Center (TDC) showcased the “Food Re-design” project finale on December 15. The presentation was carried out specially in the fashion of theatrical play and turned W Taipei’s “the kitchen table” into a fantasy restaurant on stage and the creative designs by Taiwanese designers into the main features on the dining table, showing participating guests how dinning can become more playful through people, food, and design. In the end of the event, W Taipei announced 2 products by Lance Han (W tableware) and Kevin Chou (W the chopsticks) which are expected to be purchased by the hotel as the hotel restaurant tableware in the future.

“This is the 2nd year of the “Re-design” series project with Taiwan Design Center.” shared by W Taipei’s General Manager – Mr. Cary Gray. “It’s so thrilled to see the momentum of Taiwan design shimmering again at our hotel and the W Hotels Worldwide stage.”

The “2014 Re-design TDC X W TAIPEI” project was officially launched on July 4. The project features nine top Taiwanese designers—Alice Wang, Spencer Hung, Chou Yu-Jui, Balance Wu, Jerry Shiang, Jimmy Chang, Kevin Lin, Lance Han, and Cheng Hung, who adopted the innovative topic of “Food x Design” as the theme of the project, used W Taipei’s “the kitchen table” as the stage of their creativity, and collaborated with Colin Chun, the Executive Chef of W Taipei, to put forth creative design proposals for utensils, space, and dining style, injecting more local Taiwanese elements and culture into the Western restaurant.

Over the past four months, the designers participated in intensive design workshops hosted by four local and international advisors, including Dutch food designer Annelies Hermsen, Editor-in-Chief of GQ Magazine Blues To (Du Tsu-Ye), Carnival CEO Stephanie Wen, and Tainaner Ensemble Co-Artistic Director Tsai Pao-Chang, to broaden and deepen their design concepts and contents.

The design proposals are diverse. Some designers focus on the sensual experience of dinning, such as Cheng Hung’s design that integrates plates and stereo; Lance Han uses the seven-pieces feast table illustrated in Yan Ji Tu from the Song dynasty as the concept for his W Tableware that can be freely arranged into different shapes. Some other designers’ proposals echo the idea of environmental sustainability, such as Balance Wu’s tableware inspired by the beautiful island of Formosa that can be arranged into Taiwan’s landscapes; Kevin Lin transforms used red wine bottles commonly found in restaurants as plant containers. Some designers strive to present interesting dining experience, such as Jerry Shiang’s innocent design that integrates of the shape of fish and popsicles. When consumers are eating the popsicles, it is as if they are eating fish as fishbone gradually show up. In the end, the fishbone can be used as coffee stirrer. Alice Wang incorporates the concept of dragon’s beard candy into tableware, so that consumers can be creative and turn dragon’s beard candy into different designs and shapes, turning the traditional sweet into an interesting and fashionable snack.

The press conference was conducted in form of a special theatrical presentation, and the organizers invited Director Lin Meng-Huan, winner of best script at Taipei Literature Award, to write and direct the play; through innovative theatrical expressions, Director Lin presented the works of the designers and the wonderful energy sparked by “food” and “design” that people are to experience.

In recent years, Industrial Development Bureau, MOEA, has strived for the internationalization of Taiwan’s design industry. Last year, in the “2013 Trash Re-design” project in collaboration with W Taipei, designers utilized and redesigned green materials made from recycled disposable packaging of the hotel into fashionable design products, which generated millions in sales. This year, the works of these designers are given out as souvenirs to guests staying at W Taipei and participants of events held at W Taipei; and in all the W Hotels around the world, visitors can see how Taiwanese designers designed for the international hotel brand as soon as they turn on the in-room TV. Through successful collaboration between Taiwanese designers and the renowned global brand and channel, the world gets to see Taiwan’s soft strength in design. In the future, we will continue to explore collaborative opportunities with international brands to gain more exposure for local designers on the global stage, so that they can keep pace with international trends, and to take advantage of the competitive edge of Taiwan’s design agility and innovation.

Pictured: W Taipei Food Redesign - Designer Lance Han, TDC Deputy CEO Oliver Lin, W Taipei Marcom Director Wina Chen, IDB Director General Ming Ji Wu

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